Horfield C 2.5-3.5 Cabot C
1.Levine 1/2 -Turner, 2.Radford 1-0 Muscarano, 3. Pollett 1-0 Jones, 4.Holmes 0-1 Marston. 5.Chatterjee 0-1 Ratnoo 6. Zielinski 0-1 Drummond
Horfield C, in much need of points came up against a Cabot A team missing their top player. It was always going to be a tough match. Half way though the evening, Horfield looked to have the edge. Mike and Prakash both had fairly even games. Bob had a strong queen side attack, Nigel was under pressure on the King side but both Tom and Piotr had a Rook to Knight advantage over their opponents.
Mikes game eventually ended in a draw. Bob pushed home his queen side attack to win the game. Prakash had gone a couple of pawns down and then made a mistake which quickly ended the game. Tom was trying to stop a past pawn from advancing and then fell to a rook fork by the knight that evened up the pieces. After the remaining rooks were swapped off, the advanced pawn meant that Tom’s queen was preoccupied in stopping the queening and being a couple of pawns down could not do much once his opponents king started to march down the board. Piotr had his rooks and queen joined up but could not break through. His opponent had a pair of strong knights in the centre of the board that were untouchable by his own bishop. They proved to be decisive and with time running out the game was lost. Nigel’s opponent was in control but he never quite had enough to break through without making some major sacrifices. Nigel’s rooks were joined up on the H column and once he had swapped off queens and activated his bishop the end was quick and his opponent resigned as soon as he realised that he was about to go a piece down. Another disappointing 2.5-3.5 loss for the team.
It was noticeable how two of our players both with very good positions fell foul of knight forks. Grand Master’s often teach in end game play keep your King and Rook against a King and Knight at some distance apart for that very reason of being forked. Also, when you have a strong position but do not see how to win the game it can be settled by offering a draw, Did they? Maybe I don’t know, nevertheless they played on and allowed their positions to crumble. Now in the lower divisions you may get second chances to recover when being worse on the board but in divisions one and two that rarely happens. Some points worth considering in future perhaps.